The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is supporting the cleanup of a blighted site primed for an ambitious redevelopment project.

Monday, the DEQ announced it will loan $1.25 million and grant $100,000 to mitigate contamination of a historic Vicksburg paper mill. Paper City Development, LLC. plans invest $50 million to redevelop the long-vacant mill complex into a mixed-use space.

Chris Moore, a Vicksburg native and owner of Old Stove Brewery in Seattle, is proposing to place a a craft beverage taproom, office, retail and residential space in the sprawling mill complex.

The brownfield funding will be used to perform an environmental assessment and remove contaminated soils. A portion of the building damaged by a 2012 arson will be demolished.

The mill hasn’t been used since 2001 and is heavily contaminated with toxic metals left over from industrial activities. At its peak of 250 workers, the mill was once the largest employer in Vicksburg.

The redevelopment project is expected to add 200 new jobs in Vicksburg. The state equalized value of the property should increase from $159,800 to $12,000,000 following redevelopment.

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